Fort White topples Dixie County, 7-5 to reach Class 1A state softball finals

Third time is the charm for Indians vs. Bears
NCLF will have representation in 1A title game
Published: May. 24, 2022 at 6:55 PM EDT
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CLERMONT, Fla. (WCJB) -Fort White is headed to its first state softball championship game after defeating Dixie County, 7-5 in Tuesday’s FHSAA Class 1A state semifinals in Clermont. It was a meeting between two schools that were each playing in the state semis for the first time. The Indians (16-7) won their seventh in a row to set up a title game matchup against Jay (21-5) at 4:30 on Wednesday.

Fort White prevailed for the first time against Dixie County in three head to head games this season. The Indians got to work immediately, scoring four runs in the top of the first inning on RBI singles by Ciara Byrd, Madalyn Keen, and Madison Brown, who delivered two runs on her single.

The Bears responded in the bottom half, scoring two on an infield single from Madisyn Langford. Dixie County trailed, 4-2 after an inning.

Indians’ pitcher Kadence Compton helped her own cause in the top of the second, launching a three-run homer to increase Fort White’s lead to 7-2. Four Indians produced multi-hit games, including three by Gracie Clemons.

Dixie County scored single runs in the second, on an RBI double by Peyton Hatcher, in the fourth on Ava Bechtold’s run-scoring single, and in the fifth when Langford plated another run. But the Bears got no closer, had their 10-game winning streak broken, and finish 21-5 overall.

Both starting pitchers went the distance. Dixie County’s Bria Hinkle yielded six earned runs on ten hits while striking out seven batters. Compton collected the win for Fort White, fanning five batters and allowing five earned runs on eight hits.

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